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KA_JUN's Photo KA_JUN SparkPoints: (53,241)
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8/14/13 11:59 P

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Commuting rules. I commute in dress clothes, shirt & tie. Keep it below, say 14 mph, the way in is downhill, so no prob. Hammer home. Many days, the commute is the best part of my day. I commute on a section of the Three Rivers Heritage Trail / Great Allegheny Passage, right next to the Parkway. Watching all that traffic, I gotta say, wouldn't trade it for the world. +1 for panniers, been looking at picking up a Timbuk 2 Shift Pannier/messenger back to upgrade...we'll see. bikepgh.org/101/

Pain is weakness leaving the body.

How do you eat an elephant?

I will not fail.


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HILLSLUG98239's Photo HILLSLUG98239 SparkPoints: (29,850)
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8/14/13 1:30 P

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Besides panniers, there are also "trunk" bags that sit on top of a rack. I have one, and it's handy, but it does make it a little tougher to throw my legs over the seat.

Love God. Love your neighbor. Change the world. It really is that simple.

Pain is inevitable. Suffering is optional.


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DDOORN's Photo DDOORN Posts: 23,573
8/14/13 9:59 A

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My panniers are Axiom Cartier Journey, don't think they make 'em anymore. They were around $100 for the pair. My mistake is that they are NOT waterproof, would recommend that. I've sprayed them with waterproofing, have yet to test how well that will work. When I tour I plan to keep everything inside the pannier within ziplock bags. They have larger 2 gallon sizes which work for clothes.

Here are a few Axiom panniers at Amazon:

www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss_1?ur
l=
search-alias%3Dsporting&field-keyworR>ds=axiom+pannier&rh=n%3A3375251%2Ck%
3A
axiom+pannier


Don

Co-Team Leader for All Health Pros, Binghamton Area Losers & Laid Off But Staying Strong SparkTeams

Don't die with your music still in you. -- Dr. Wayne Dyer

"We either make ourselves miserable or we make ourselves strong. The amount of work is the same." --- Carlos Castaneda

"You yourself, as much as anybody in the entire universe, deserve your love and affection." --- Buddha

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LOSINGFORBABY's Photo LOSINGFORBABY SparkPoints: (5,593)
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8/13/13 11:03 P

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Hoping to get a rack in the next few months. Do they require particular bags?

Jennifer


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DDOORN's Photo DDOORN Posts: 23,573
8/13/13 10:28 P

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Oh yeah, forget the backpack...love my pannier!

Don

Co-Team Leader for All Health Pros, Binghamton Area Losers & Laid Off But Staying Strong SparkTeams

Don't die with your music still in you. -- Dr. Wayne Dyer

"We either make ourselves miserable or we make ourselves strong. The amount of work is the same." --- Carlos Castaneda

"You yourself, as much as anybody in the entire universe, deserve your love and affection." --- Buddha

rules4humans.com


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GREENGENES's Photo GREENGENES Posts: 2,537
8/13/13 10:18 P

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I also carry a fresh shirt in my bag. I stopped carrying a backpack because it just increased the sweat. I finally got a rack to carry my bag which helps. I work at a university so I can use the showers at the fitness center but some days I just go direct to my office and change shirts. A colleague suggested using hand sanitizer to quickly "freshen up" but I haven't tried that.

Dave

Research is what I am doing when I don�t know what I am doing.

- Werner von Braun


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DDOORN's Photo DDOORN Posts: 23,573
8/13/13 3:55 P

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I bring a shirt to change into, head to the rest room and grab a wad of paper towels to sop up the sweat and change my shirt in a stall. Back when I worked in the hospital I had the luxury of a shower...but I would never consider returning to hospital bureaucracy just for a shower...lol!

I figure each day I bike 10-12 miles each way at 50 cents a mile I pocket $10 a day! :-)

Don

Co-Team Leader for All Health Pros, Binghamton Area Losers & Laid Off But Staying Strong SparkTeams

Don't die with your music still in you. -- Dr. Wayne Dyer

"We either make ourselves miserable or we make ourselves strong. The amount of work is the same." --- Carlos Castaneda

"You yourself, as much as anybody in the entire universe, deserve your love and affection." --- Buddha

rules4humans.com


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_MOBII_'s Photo _MOBII_ SparkPoints: (18,257)
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8/13/13 3:12 P

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I will check out the cycling caps next time I get to the sports store.
I have noticed that helping out someones pocketbook is the best way to get them to try something, at the moment, my fuel usage is 0 because my car died and I finally got rid of it.

When it started having problems and nickel and diming me to death, using less fuel was one of the items on my pro list of just getting rid of the car all together. That was when I was in southern Louisiana...now that I am back in northern Illinois, the prospect of not having a car in winter has moved to the con side of my list....depending on how close to home I get a job!

Tracy, Illinois, CST

Man sacrifices his health in order to make money.

Then he sacrifices money to recuperate his health.

And then he is so anxious about the future that he does not enjoy the present;

The result being that he does not live in the present or the future;
he lives as if he is never going to die, and then dies having never really lived.
~The Dalai Lama


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HILLSLUG98239's Photo HILLSLUG98239 SparkPoints: (29,850)
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8/13/13 3:04 P

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I work in an office. Fortunately, I have my own office, so I have a place to store my clothes and to change. I recognize that's a luxury not everyone has.

I bring in suits for the week when I drive in on Monday. I hate the thought of carrying a backpack. I used to use a messenger bag. It's a better choice than a backpack because it keeps the weight lower on your back.

The sweat thing isn't much of an issue. Fresh sweat doesn't smell. (On most people; I've know people whose body chemistry was unkind.) I keep a couple of microfiber towels in my office to wipe the sweat off. But if you're concerned about sweat, baby wipes are a great idea.

I wear a cycling cap under my helmet. It really does diminish helmet-head. But my hair is really fine, so that might not work as well with thicker or kinky hair.

I consider myself an ambassador. A lot of people see me coming and going on my bike. I try to convince them to try it a few times - they may be surprised how easy it is. And, even if you only ride one day a week, that cuts your fuel bill by 20%! (That usually piques their interest more than anything else.)

Love God. Love your neighbor. Change the world. It really is that simple.

Pain is inevitable. Suffering is optional.


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_MOBII_'s Photo _MOBII_ SparkPoints: (18,257)
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8/13/13 2:54 P

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Oh, baby wipes, good idea! Its been so long since my babies were babies that I forget just how useful they are!

Tracy, Illinois, CST

Man sacrifices his health in order to make money.

Then he sacrifices money to recuperate his health.

And then he is so anxious about the future that he does not enjoy the present;

The result being that he does not live in the present or the future;
he lives as if he is never going to die, and then dies having never really lived.
~The Dalai Lama


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LOSINGFORBABY's Photo LOSINGFORBABY SparkPoints: (5,593)
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8/13/13 2:41 P

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From what I learned last week, recently built offices are required to include showers (I don't think that is just here . . . ). I've also heard suggestions of finding a nearby gym (although if you don't already have a membership, it seems quite expensive just to pay for showers) . . . there is also the pack some clothes, baby wipes, and extra deodorant. I've heard keeping a fan by your desk is handy!

Jennifer


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_MOBII_'s Photo _MOBII_ SparkPoints: (18,257)
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8/13/13 2:29 P

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Oh, one more question on the subject, hm, how do I word it?
How do you manage to commute to work and not show up all sweaty and stinky, haha!

I am the sort of person that does not sweat much at all, even during exercise, but I have noticed that I sweat quite a bit when riding.
While I am currently unemployed, my normal job is office work, all I can think of is to stick all my work clothes in a backpack and taking a birdbath in the sink in the bathroom before beginning work....and I would have no idea what to do with helmet-hair!

Tracy, Illinois, CST

Man sacrifices his health in order to make money.

Then he sacrifices money to recuperate his health.

And then he is so anxious about the future that he does not enjoy the present;

The result being that he does not live in the present or the future;
he lives as if he is never going to die, and then dies having never really lived.
~The Dalai Lama


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_MOBII_'s Photo _MOBII_ SparkPoints: (18,257)
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8/13/13 2:25 P

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@LosingForBaby Glad you made it there and back ok!

@Hillslug I do get off and walk my bike across the bigger intersections....walking them makes me nervous as well due to a fall in the road last summer (while walking, lol), long story, but I was sure that I was going to get my back and legs run over.
I scraped both palms down to the meat and had some assorted bangs and bruises. Just call me grace, lol!
Ever since then, I panic a bit on big roads....I will just have to work up my nerve.

Tracy, Illinois, CST

Man sacrifices his health in order to make money.

Then he sacrifices money to recuperate his health.

And then he is so anxious about the future that he does not enjoy the present;

The result being that he does not live in the present or the future;
he lives as if he is never going to die, and then dies having never really lived.
~The Dalai Lama


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LOSINGFORBABY's Photo LOSINGFORBABY SparkPoints: (5,593)
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8/13/13 11:36 A

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Thanks!
I did, in fact, make it there AND back today! While I wasn't able to bike the route beforehand, it was on roads that I'm very familiar with—although one certainly notices the hills a lot more when on a bike =0) Had to stop and walk once on the way there, but made it all the way back on bike (it had more downhills!). On the trip back, since I wasn't worried about time (I gave myself lots of extra time on the way there, but failed to restart my Garmin after the walk, so I lot track of how much time had passed, still feeling nerves, etc) I was able to enjoy the ride and scenery.

Success!

Jennifer


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DDOORN's Photo DDOORN Posts: 23,573
8/13/13 9:21 A

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Dumb? Two wheels? In the same sentence? Inconceivable! :-)

Cool that you're onto the Google Map bicycling feature, was going to suggest that, but with a caveat...sometimes it will send you down less than optimal roads.

Here's another: before tackling your cycling commute on a work day, do it a number of times on a non-work day when there aren't any time pressures or concerns. That way you can "tweak" your route to find what works best for you, even if Google Maps doesn't suggest it. Perhaps even drive the route initially just to eyeball it and cruise around for possible alternatives that may not be as direct, but with less traffic.

I am blessed by having two parks and trails which make up almost half of the ten miles between home and work.

If your ride will be early enough before full daylight is available I highly recommend a light for either your helmet or bike. I am very fond of my Light & Motion VIS 360:

www.lightandmotion.com/bike/vis360.h
tm
l

www.amazon.com/Light-Motion-VIS-Degr
ee
-Bike/dp/B008KKNSQ0


Folks really sit up and take notice when I have this on and because the light is high up on my helmet it shines out a greater distance that it would perched on my bike. Plus as it is on my helmet I can turn my head to direct the light to where I need it or to be sure I've got the attention of motorists around me at an intersection.

Also regarding intersections: if you have a crazy/busy intersection that you are intimidated by, as I was initially, don't hesitate to step into the crosswalk, get off the bike and follow pedestrian rules for crossing. Your jangled nerves will thank you! :-)

Don

Edited by: DDOORN at: 8/13/2013 (09:23)
Co-Team Leader for All Health Pros, Binghamton Area Losers & Laid Off But Staying Strong SparkTeams

Don't die with your music still in you. -- Dr. Wayne Dyer

"We either make ourselves miserable or we make ourselves strong. The amount of work is the same." --- Carlos Castaneda

"You yourself, as much as anybody in the entire universe, deserve your love and affection." --- Buddha

rules4humans.com


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HILLSLUG98239's Photo HILLSLUG98239 SparkPoints: (29,850)
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8/12/13 11:28 P

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With that clarification, I have no idea.

Love God. Love your neighbor. Change the world. It really is that simple.

Pain is inevitable. Suffering is optional.


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HILLSLUG98239's Photo HILLSLUG98239 SparkPoints: (29,850)
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8/12/13 11:26 P

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You can always go to the crosswalk and walk. (Assuming there's a crosswalk. I know there are places that don't have them.)

Here in Washington, it's legal to ride on the sidewalk unless banned by local ordinance. When I lived in Spokane, there was one intersection I would only tackle by bike if it was 6 a.m. Otherwise, I took the crosswalks.

Love God. Love your neighbor. Change the world. It really is that simple.

Pain is inevitable. Suffering is optional.


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LOSINGFORBABY's Photo LOSINGFORBABY SparkPoints: (5,593)
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8/12/13 10:24 P

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I don't mean dumb in general—I bought the bike to commute. I meant specifically for attempting an 8-mile roundtrip commute tomorrow after not riding more than 2 miles in recent history. I have done spinning classes at the gym, but it has been a few months for that, too.

Jennifer


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8/12/13 8:02 P

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I could (and usually do) stick to sidewalks here, but to get to some of the places I need to go, there would be a lot of major roads to cross....as in 8-10 lanes wide. Thats what makes me nervous.

Tracy, Illinois, CST

Man sacrifices his health in order to make money.

Then he sacrifices money to recuperate his health.

And then he is so anxious about the future that he does not enjoy the present;

The result being that he does not live in the present or the future;
he lives as if he is never going to die, and then dies having never really lived.
~The Dalai Lama


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HILLSLUG98239's Photo HILLSLUG98239 SparkPoints: (29,850)
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8/12/13 7:59 P

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You are not dumb for considering commuting by bike! I am required to have a car at work, but I commute by bike several days a week. I leave my car parked at the office and ride my bike back & forth.

It's a good idea to try out your proposed ride on a weekend just to give you an idea how long it will take. That won't tell you what traffic is like, but at least you'll know your body can do it.

If you're looking for specific advice, I can let you know about my experiences - just send my a SparkMail.

Love God. Love your neighbor. Change the world. It really is that simple.

Pain is inevitable. Suffering is optional.


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8/12/13 7:50 P

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Oh, the whole commuting thing makes me nervous, buy google maps bike route option seems to go with not-as-crazy roads. Granted, there will be quite a few stop signs (in addition to all the traffic lights!) on my route.

Jennifer


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8/12/13 7:47 P

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I am a newbie also, so I don't have much to add, but I am interested in seeing some feedback on this. I think about commuting all the time, but to be honest, the traffic here scares the pants off of me.
emoticon

Tracy, Illinois, CST

Man sacrifices his health in order to make money.

Then he sacrifices money to recuperate his health.

And then he is so anxious about the future that he does not enjoy the present;

The result being that he does not live in the present or the future;
he lives as if he is never going to die, and then dies having never really lived.
~The Dalai Lama


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LOSINGFORBABY's Photo LOSINGFORBABY SparkPoints: (5,593)
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8/12/13 7:10 P

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I bought my first bike in years on Saturday. Did a short test drive on it and another bike day of, 2 miles yesterday (felt good at the end and wanted to stay that way). Tomorrow I have a casual meeting about 4 miles away (so 8 mile round trip). I know that isn't really far, but given I've not been on a bike (except in spinning or regular gym bike), I'm wanting to make sure I'm not dumb for trying to head out on two wheels. Thoughts?

Jennifer


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